By Samuel Oyadongha, Yenagoa
Governor Seriake Dickson of Bayelsa State Friday paid glowing tribute to late Gen Andrew Owoye Azazi saying the Ijaw nation has “lost one of it’s finest and very best.”
In an emotional voice, Dickson who spoke at the Service of Songs held in honour of the departed former National Security Adviser and first four star general from the Ijaw nation at the Peace Park in Yenagoa noted with sadness that the tragic death of Azazi has created a huge vacuum that would be difficult to fill. The governor in an address said, “Today, we gather here to honour a true hero of the Ijaw Nation. We are here to pay our deepest respect to a great leader and national icon.
“For us in Bayesla State, the tragic, unfortunate and untimely death of General Andrew Owoye Azazi (CFRC) has created a huge vacuum that would be very difficult to fill. We have not only lost a kinsman, big brother, father, grandfather, friend and colleague; the Ijaw Nation has clearly lost one of its finest and very best! He was a patriot who gave his all!
”That is why, as a government, we did not hesitate to declare him as a true hero of Ijaw land and one who is deserving of a heroic burial as his remains will be the first to be interred at the Heroes Park – an exclusive burial/final resting place reserved only for all true legends and heroes of the State. The Heroes Park, where General Azazi will be buried is a fitting tribute to his person and bears eloquent testimonies to the proud legacies and ideals that he was known and admired for.
“ It will also serve as a constant reminder of his unblemished and outstanding record of service to the State and Nation. To the wonderful family that he left behind, please be rest assured that our prayers will always be with you and you can count on our continued support and co- operation.
”Truly, we have lost a visionary leader and statesman and there may be no greater tribute to General Azazi’s illustrious military career than the fact that he was a first class military officer, who rose through the ranks as a professional soldier and duly earned his place in the history of the Nigerian Army as the only decorated four star general who truly earned his rank”.